People in NYC are spoiled, but it’s not completely our fault. We as a city have so many options (food, music, movies, museums, outdoor activities, etc) that if things aren’t perfect, we can always move on to something else fairly easily. However, with a SOLD OUT festival such as Googa Mooga, you have to be more strategic as opposed to flying by the seat of your pants. You can’t just show up 15 minutes before the band you want to see and expect to get a close seat and easy access to the food you want without a line.
Let me back up a little. Last night, I had a chance to check out the humorously satirical Mooga Shmooga Twitter account as well as the #googamooga feed, so I had a good idea of a lot of the negatives and planned accordingly:
- I got to the festival at 11:30am when they were NO LINES FOR ANYTHING.
- I hit up the vendors that were more likely to sell out.
- I worked around the lack of cell phone service by having a meetup point for my friends in the event we ever got separated. This is also a plus because I just turned my phone on Airplane Mode to take pictures and enjoy the moment without Twitter or text message distractions.
- More importantly, I entered the festival grounds knowing that it was SOLD OUT, so lines and crowds are to be expected.
All this being said, I had such an amazing time. Great food. Perfect musical accompaniment. Incredible company with me. Also, it seemed like Superfly adapted overnight based on the feedback and addressed a lot of the larger issues on Sunday (except for cell phone service, which was pretty much out of their hands as getting a cell phone tower wasn’t gonna happen overnight).
My girlfriend and her friend Alex pretty much shared everything listed below (in chronological eating order):
- Dirty Duck Dog from Craft > Glad I got it, but nothing special. Lacked a heavy duck flavor, but the slaw was crunchy and refreshing on top
- Pastrami Sandwich from Mile End > Juicy, but not too fatty and just big enough to sample (Honorable Mention)
- Crawfish from Crawfish Monica (#2) > Crawfish and macaroni with a creamy cajun sauce that had the perfect amount of kick.
- Oaxaca Grilled Cheese from Little Muenster (PICTURED BELOW) > With a dash of hot sauce on top, it was a crispy, crunchy, fresh and gooey delicious sandwich
- Strawberry Rhubarb pop from People’s Pops > Fresh palate cleanser
- Roasted Chicken, Mac n Greens, and Corn Bread from Red Rooster Harlem (PICTURED BELOW) > Chicken (especially the sauce) was simply amazing and was a much cheaper version of what’s in the restaurant ($11 vs $28) (#1)
- Fried Chicken Banh Mi from Joseph Leonard > Crunchy but not too greasy with perfect ciabatta bread. I also hate mayo, but found their cilantro aioli to be a tasty condiment.
- Lemon Ginger Soda from Brooklyn Soda Works > Pre-dessert refreshment
- Dirt-Cake from Katzie Guy-Hamilton (#3) > Someone walked by me with this clear cup filled with what appeared to be chocolate in four forms. I stopped her and asked what it was and she told me it was a Dirt-Cake. There was chocolate pudding, chocolate cake, chocolate crumbles, chocolate malt balls, orange curd (or something similar), butterscotch, gummy worms, and topped with whipped cream. Nice balance of flavors and when shared with two other people, I didn’t feel like shit.
As for the music, I wasn’t disappointed in what I saw. To quote my girlfriend, future BBS band Lucius was an enjoyable mix of the 60’s and 80’s. Couldn’t agree more. And then Charles Bradley hit the stage shortly after who was amazing. Incredible band chemistry, stage presence, energy level, and what a voice! By the time Fitz and the Tantrums hit the stage, I was fairly burnt out from the day, so I just laid out and relaxed in the sun before heading out around 5pm.
All in all, my friends and I had a blast. I will definitely go back next year (assuming they’re doing it again and that they change up the vendors).